On Today’s Gospel

Posted: July 18, 2018 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Instead of complaining for what we lack or being driven solely for the purpose of gaining wealth, are we grateful to the Lord our God for all that we have? Have we praised Him and offered thanksgiving? Have we ordered our lives to proper worship of Him so as to properly love our families and neighbour?

We go on thinking we have accomplished all that we have on our own. By our own strengths and wisdom. Hence even those who are illustrious in their studies of God end up knowing more about Him but not knowing Him personally in a relationship for they do not live their faith of any.

Today and everyday, let us invite Jesus personally into our lives. In everything we say and do, let the praise of God be on our lips. And in gratitude offer thanksgiving by living our lives according to His will for us. Amen

First reading

Isaiah 10:5-7,13-16
Assyria’s arrogance and coming ruin

The Lord of hosts says this:

Woe to Assyria, the rod of my anger, the club brandished by me in my fury!
I sent him against a godless nation; I gave him commission against a people that provokes me, to pillage and to plunder freely and to stamp down like the mud in the streets.
But he did not intend this, his heart did not plan it so. No, in his heart was to destroy, to go on cutting nations to pieces without limit.

For he has said:

‘By the strength of my own arm I have done this and by my own intelligence, for understanding is mine; I have pushed back the frontiers of peoples
and plundered their treasures.
I have brought their inhabitants down to the dust. As if they were a bird’s nest, my hand has seized the riches of the peoples.
As people pick up deserted eggs I have picked up the whole earth, with not a wing fluttering, not a beak opening, not a chirp.’

Does the axe claim more credit than the man who wields it, or the saw more strength than the man who handles it?
It would be like the cudgel controlling the man who raises it, or the club moving what is not made of wood!
And so the Lord of Hosts is going to send a wasting sickness on his stout warriors; beneath his plenty, a burning will burn like a consuming fire.

Gospel

Matthew 11:25-27
You have hidden these things from the wise and revealed them to little children

Jesus exclaimed, ‘I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to mere children. Yes, Father, for that is what it pleased you to do. Everything has been entrusted to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, just as no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: July 17, 2018 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

It is only when someone cares enough that they will tell, even nag at you to change your ways for the better. Otherwise most will just give up and stop caring whether you lived or died. The love of our Lord Jesus Christ is such that He never stops loving and caring for you. Urging you to repent of your sins and come to Him. For He does not want you die in your sins.

There is no greater love for us then that of our loving Father in heaven. Let us choose then to be faithful and strive each day for greater holiness. With the grace He outpours on us each each day and our ardent desire to live in His love, we will surely be holy as He our heavenly Father is Holy. Amen

First reading

Isaiah 7:1-9
Isaiah tells the king not to fear

In the reign of Ahaz son of Jotham, son of Uzziah, king of Judah, Razon the king of Aram went up against Jerusalem with Pekah son of Remaliah, king of Israel, to lay siege to it; but he was unable to capture it.
The news was brought to the House of David. ‘Aram’ they said ‘has reached Ephraim.’ Then the heart of the king and the hearts of the people shuddered as the trees of the forest shudder in front of the wind. The Lord said to Isaiah, ‘Go with your son Shear-jashub, and meet Ahaz at the end of the conduit of the upper pool on the Fuller’s Field road, and say to him:

‘“Pay attention, keep calm, have no fear,
do not let your heart sink because of these two smouldering stumps of firebrands, or because Aram, Ephraim and the son of Remaliah have plotted to ruin you, and have said:
Let us invade Judah and terrorise it and seize it for ourselves, and set up a king there, the son of Tabeel.
The Lord says this: It shall not come true; it shall not be.
The capital of Aram is Damascus,the head of Damascus, Razon;the capital of Ephraim, Samaria,the head of Samaria, the son of Remaliah.
Six or five years more
and a shattered Ephraim shall no longer be a people. But if you do not stand by me,you will not stand at all.”’

Gospel

Matthew 11:20-24
It will not go as hard with Sodom on Judgement Day as with you

Jesus began to reproach the towns in which most of his miracles had been worked, because they refused to repent.
‘Alas for you, Chorazin! Alas for you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. And still, I tell you that it will not go as hard on Judgement day with Tyre and Sidon as with you. And as for you, Capernaum, did you want to be exalted as high as heaven? You shall be thrown down to hell. For if the miracles done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have been standing yet. And still, I tell you that it will not go as hard with the land of Sodom on Judgement day as with you.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: July 16, 2018 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

We cannot buy our way of the evil committed against our sisters and brothers. And no amount of donations can make up for the proper worship of the Lord our God either. It is only through a sincere contrite heart seeking to love and be loved that we are redeemed.

In order to truly love our family and our brethren the way they ought to be loved, we must put the Lord our God first before all else. Only then can we love as He loves. With a love that is willing to be laid down for another.

Sweet heart of Jesus, let mine be moulded after Yours. Amen

First reading

Isaiah 1:10-17
Take your wrongdoing out of my sight

Hear the word of the Lord, you rulers of Sodom;listen to the command of our God,you people of Gomorrah.

‘What are your endless sacrifices to me? says the Lord. I am sick of holocausts of rams and the fat of calves. The blood of bulls and of goats revolts me. When you come to present yourselves before me, who asked you to trample over my courts?
Bring me your worthless offerings no more, the smoke of them fills me with disgust.
New Moons, sabbaths, assemblies – I cannot endure festival and solemnity.
Your New Moons and your pilgrimages I hate with all my soul. They lie heavy on me, I am tired of bearing them.
When you stretch out your hands I turn my eyes away. You may multiply your prayers, I shall not listen. Your hands are covered with blood,
wash, make yourselves clean.

‘Take your wrong-doing out of my sight. Cease to do evil.
Learn to do good, search for justice, help the oppressed, be just to the orphan, plead for the widow.’

Gospel

Matthew 10:34-11:1
It is not peace I have come to bring, but a sword

Jesus instructed the Twelve as follows: ‘Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth: it is not peace I have come to bring, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. A man’s enemies will be those of his own household.
‘Anyone who prefers father or mother to me is not worthy of me. Anyone who prefers son or daughter to me is not worthy of me. Anyone who does not take his cross and follow in my footsteps is not worthy of me. Anyone who finds his life will lose it; anyone who loses his life for my sake will find it.
‘Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me; and those who welcome me welcome the one who sent me.
‘Anyone who welcomes a prophet will have a prophet’s reward; and anyone who welcomes a holy man will have a holy man’s reward.
‘If anyone gives so much as a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is a disciple, then I tell you solemnly, he will most certainly not lose his reward.’
When Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples he moved on from there to teach and preach in their towns.

First Day As A Steward

Posted: July 15, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted: July 14, 2018 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections

The Church’s Mission: Scott Hahn Reflects on the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Readings:

Amos 7:12–15
Psalms 85:9–14
Ephesians 1:3–14
Mark 6:7–13

In commissioning the Apostles in today’s Gospel, Jesus gives them, and us, a preview of His Church’s mission after the Resurrection.
His instructions to the Twelve echo those of God to the Twelve Tribes of Israel on the eve of their exodus from Egypt. The Israelites were sent out with no bread and only one set of clothes, wearing sandals and carrying a staff (Exodus 12:11; Deuteronomy 8:2–4). Like the Israelites, the Apostles are to rely solely on the providence of God and His grace.
Perhaps Mark also wants us to see the Apostles’ mission, the mission of the Church, as that of leading a new exodus—delivering peoples from their exile from God and bringing them to the promised land, the kingdom of heaven.
Like Amos in today’s First Reading, the Apostles are not “professionals,” who earn their bread by prophesying. Like Amos, they are simply men (Acts 14:15) summoned from their ordinary jobs and sent by God to be shepherds of their brothers and sisters.
Again this week, we hear the theme of rejection: Amos experiences it, and Jesus warns the Apostles that some will not welcome or listen to them. The Church is called not necessarily to be successful, but only to be faithful to God’s command.
With authority and power given to it by Jesus, the Church proclaims God’s peace and salvation to those who believe in Him, as we sing in today’s Psalm.
This word of truth, this Gospel of salvation, is addressed to each of us, personally, as Paul proclaims in today’s Epistle. In the mystery of God’s will, we have been chosen from before the foundation of the world—to be His sons and daughters, to live for the praise of His glory.
Let us, then, give thanks for the Church today, and for the spiritual blessings He has bestowed upon us. Let us resolve to further the Church’s mission—to help others hear the call to repentance and welcome Christ into their lives.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: July 14, 2018 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

We should never feel inadequate or unworthy of speaking to others of God’s immense love for us and for others. Who better to touch the heart of a sinner then one who had sinned greatly in the past and was made whole again by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. For it through Jesus that our sin is purged and it is He alone then sanctifies us so that we can live In his love and be powerful instruments of His grace. All we need is to be obedient to His call.

Indeed when we acknowledge that He is the Lord of Lords, King of kings in our lives, He dwells in us. What then have we to fear? Or have need for? For He is with us in all situations at all times. So let us strive to be faithful as He the Lord our God is faithful and stand ready always to be sent as He wills. Amen

Glory and Praise to You O Lord Jesus Christ, now and forever. Amen

First reading

Isaiah 6:1-8
Isaiah’s lips cleansed with a burning coal

In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord of Hosts seated on a high throne; his train filled the sanctuary; above him stood seraphs, each one with six wings: two to cover its face, two to cover its feet, and two for flying.
And they cried out to one another in this way,

‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Hosts.
His glory fills the whole earth.’

The foundations of the threshold shook with the voice of the one who cried out, and the Temple was filled with smoke. I said:

‘What a wretched state I am in! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have looked at the King, the Lord of Hosts.’

Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding in his hand a live coal which he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. With this he touched my mouth and said:

‘See now, this has touched your lips,your sin is taken away,your iniquity is purged.’

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying:

‘Whom shall I send? Who will be our messenger?’

I answered, ‘Here I am, send me.’

Gospel

Matthew 10:24-33
Everything now hidden will be made clear

Jesus instructed the Twelve as follows: ‘The disciple is not superior to his teacher, nor the slave to his master. It is enough for the disciple that he should grow to be like his teacher, and the slave like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, what will they not say of his household?
‘Do not be afraid of them therefore. For everything that is now covered will be uncovered, and everything now hidden will be made clear. What I say to you in the dark, tell in the daylight; what you hear in whispers, proclaim from the housetops.
‘Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; fear him rather who can destroy both body and soul in hell. Can you not buy two sparrows for a penny? And yet not one falls to the ground without your Father knowing. Why, every hair on your head has been counted. So there is no need to be afraid; you are worth more than hundreds of sparrows.
‘So if anyone declares himself for me in the presence of men, I will declare myself for him in the presence of my Father in heaven. But the one who disowns me in the presence of men, I will disown in the presence of my Father in heaven.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: July 13, 2018 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Have you ever wondered why the Lord is so patient in calling us over and over again to repentance? Apart from His genuine love for us, He knows we are a stubborn, headstrong lot. Some need more time and coaxing to realise just how empty their lives are without Him. Others are so entrenched in their sinful lives they rather bring others down with them for company then listen. Yet a few will eventually have a change of heart through the grace of the Lord our God.

We who strive for faithfulness and turn often to our beloved Lord and saviour Jesus Christ for the necessary graces to do so, are called to love. Love put into action through loving and humble servitude of brethren. To share the Gospel message of God’s love to all who will listen even those who refuse. Yes no doubt we will have many challenges, obstacles and much resistance but the Holy Spirit will be with us all the way. We will be guided on what to say and when. And we will often be astounded on greater reflection of how the word of God flowed through our lips to touch someone all because we were faithful.

Strengthen our faith and guard us against evil Lord, as we go forth to share Your Word according to Your will. Amen

First reading

Hosea 14:2-10
A call to conversion and promise of safety

The Lord says this:

Israel, come back to the Lord your God; your iniquity was the cause of your downfall.
Provide yourself with words and come back to the Lord.
Say to him, ‘Take all iniquity away so that we may have happiness again and offer you our words of praise.
Assyria cannot save us,
we will not ride horses any more, or say, “Our God!” to what our own hands have made, for you are the one in whom orphans find compassion.’
– I will heal their disloyalty, I will love them with all my heart,
for my anger has turned from them.
I will fall like dew on Israel. He shall bloom like the lily, and thrust out roots like the poplar, his shoots will spread far;he will have the beauty of the olive and the fragrance of Lebanon.
They will come back to live in my shade; they will grow corn that flourishes, they will cultivate vines as renowned as the wine of Helbon.
What has Ephraim to do with idols any more when it is I who hear his prayer and care for him?
I am like a cypress ever green, all your fruitfulness comes from me.

Let the wise man understand these words.
Let the intelligent man grasp their meaning.
For the ways of the Lord are straight, and virtuous men walk in them, but sinners stumble.

Gospel

Matthew 10:16-23
The Spirit of your Father will be speaking in you

Jesus instructed the Twelve as follows: ‘Remember, I am sending you out like sheep among wolves; so be cunning as serpents and yet as harmless as doves.
‘Beware of men: they will hand you over to sanhedrins and scourge you in their synagogues. You will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the pagans. But when they hand you over, do not worry about how to speak or what to say; what you are to say will be given to you when the time comes; because it is not you who will be speaking; the Spirit of your Father will be speaking in you. ‘Brother will betray brother to death, and the father his child; children will rise against their parents and have them put to death. You will be hated by all men on account of my name; but the man who stands firm to the end will be saved. If they persecute you in one town, take refuge in the next; and if they persecute you in that, take refuge in another. I tell you solemnly, you will not have gone the round of the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.’